27 June 2012

What women say about sex

Most women want it and enjoy it, say the results of the latest Women’s Health/Men’s Health Sex Survey.


Most women want it and enjoy it, say the results of the latest Women’s Health/Men’s Health Sex Survey.

Having polled1 457 online survey participants, here’s what the latest Women’s Health/Men’s Health Sex Survey found when it came to women’s attitudes and beliefs about sex.

The majority of women (86.3%) want sex regularly.

Once a week (9.8%), two or three times a week (52.5%) or daily (16.1%) or more (7.9%).  Women who are living with their partner, but not married to them, were the least likely to want to have sex two to three times a week (ie most regularly).

However, this dropped from 90.6% women in 2011 (ie women want sex less regularly than last year). Their biggest complaint was that they don’t have enough sex (46,8% agreed with this)

We’re an active bunch, us South Africans .  Around 50% of both men and women only need 15 mins or less till they are ready to “go” again!

Good news! A whopping 72.4% are happy with their sex lives

Of these 41.8% said they were “fully fulfilled” (or more than fulfilled) with their sex lives.  Of these, the happiest were those dating followed by those living with a partner. The least happy were single and married women.

They’re waiting longer before having sex with a new partner

The majority (26.6%) said they only had sex with a partner after several months of dating. This was up 19% from 2011. A further 22% said they waited till after a month of dating. Only 5.3% had sex on the first date.

What’s your magic number?

The number of sexual partners you have had can be an issue with your current partner. Our survey showed that:

  • Most women have had two or three sexual partners (22.9%) A drop of 9.9% from 2011.
  • A further 17% had only had one (same as 2011).
  • 16% had had between 4 or 5
  • 19.4% had had more than eight
  • The average number of sexual partners married women have had is one.
  • 17% of single women have had between 16+ or 40+ partners.
  • 29.9% of women had lied to a partner about this number.

But there’s still room for improvement

The worst mistakes a partner could make in bed were “rushes foreplay” (51.8%), “trying too hard to please me” (29.5%) and “Not communicating enough” (27.6%). The results were the same in 2011.  These results were consistent for women whether they were single, dating, married or other.

All about the Big O

One in two (51%) of women say they orgasm once during sex, while 1 in 10 say they never do (11.7%). A further 23,7% say they orgasm twice and a staggering 12,1% say three times or more! Women “dating casually” were the most likely to not experience orgasm.

  • The majority of women (65,3%) said it was not important to them to achieve orgasm during sex (“I enjoy sex, whatever way it ends”).
  • Clitoral stimulation by him was most likely to bring her to orgasm (followed by vagina sex and oral sex).
  • The worst mistake men gave while giving oral sex was “being too rough”.
  • One in 4 women complained that his beard/hair irritated them while receiving oral sex.


  • 39,4% of women said there are sexual things they would like to try but were too afraid to ask their partner for.
  • The top five of these were: Costumes/role play, toys, porn with a partner, sex with another woman and watching each other masturbate.
  • 46.0% of women have watched porn with a partner.
  • 24,7% said they had engaged in a sexual activity that they didn’t want to.


  • 33.4% of women had not found, or were not sure if they had found, their G-spot.
  • Those “dating casually” were least likely to have discovered their G-spot.
  • The majority of women (23,6%) masturbate less than once a month.
  • 31% have had sex with a co-worker.
  • 8,5% have had sex with a neighbour.
  • 10,2% have had sex with a boss.
  • 3,2% have had sex with a doctor.
  • Women are most likely to have sex in the bedroom followed by a couch/chair, bathroom, and floor.
  • 25,3% have had sex in a parked car and 21,4% have had sex outdoors in the past year.
  • 48,6% of women have used alcohol to enhance sex. 11,5% have also used recreational drugs.
  • Women are most likely to fantasise about their current partner, followed by friends and past lovers.
  • The majority of women (80,3%) think about sex once or twice a day.

Safe sex

  • 39,4% of women said they never use a condom. 26,2% of these were “single” or “dating casually”.
  • 75,2% of women said, “I don’t like using condoms, but know I need to protect myself”.
  • 87,5% of women believe in monogamy and have one sexual partner at a time. (This was down from 90,1% in 2011).
  • In a new relationship 41,4% of women say they always ask their partner to have an HIV test.

Tech and sex

  • 27,9% of women had been filmed or photographed performing a sexual act and “found it a turn-on”. 7% had, but without their consent.
  • 19,6% of women have used a social network to initiate a sexual encounter.
  • 70,4% of women agree that flirting online is cheating.
  • 62,9% have taken a sex pic of themselves and sent it to a partner.

Read more about the survey results in the latest issue of Men's Health and  Women’s Health, on sale now.

What men say about sex





Read Health24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Live healthier

Exercise benefits for seniors »

Working out in the concrete jungle Even a little exercise may help prevent dementia Here’s an unexpected way to boost your memory: running

Seniors who exercise recover more quickly from injury or illness

When sedentary older adults got into an exercise routine, it curbed their risk of suffering a disabling injury or illness and helped them recover if anything did happen to them.